About Bill Brett, Boston’s photographer
“I love what I do and I love this city. I feel that I have a front row seat in history – even as I preserve that history for Boston through my photos. “
Bill Brett started his news career hawking the Boston Globe on the street corners of his native Dorchester, Massachusetts. He first worked at the Globe as an 18-year-old part-time photographer, learning the art of photography and the business of news at the same time. In 1977, he was named chief photographer at the Globe. He was the photography-member of the Globe team nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for Journalism in 1978 and 1979. Under Bill’s leadership, staff photographer Stan Grossfeld won the only two Pulitzer Prizes ever awarded to the Globe photo staff. In 1999, Bill became Director of Photography, a position from which he retired in 2001.
His weekly “Party Lines” column continues in the print version of the Globe, together with his “The Seen” on http://www.Boston.com
. Also, since retirement from the Globe, Bill has published three books that include portraits of the heart and faces of Boston. His first book, Boston, All One Family, received the 2006 President’s Award from the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts. He also won an Award of Excellence for Photography in the 27th annual creative competition of the Society for News Design, for his portrait of Stephan Ross at Boston’s Holocaust Memorial.
In his 40 years of chronicling the life and people of the city, Bill has photographed literally thousands of events and fundraisers, with his coverage helping to raise awareness for and bring donations to the many organizations whose events he has shot. In 2009, Bill received an honorary degree from the Franklin Institute of Technology, the school at which he took his only class in photography before becoming famous as the man who shoots the faces of Boston.
Bill lives in Hingham, Massachusetts, just south of Boston.
“For Bill Brett, a city is its people, and for forty years he has been assembling a portrait of Boston, person by person, face by face. He likes to say that these are pictures of people who make a difference, but …I suspect, Bill Brett believes everyone makes a difference, and he photographs them as if they did.”
The late Robert B. Parker
“Every city is defined by various elements: its structural skyline, steel and glass. But cities have a heart and a face, too. Bill Brett has captured that beating heart and the diverse face of Boston…”
Doris Kearns Goodwin